Coca-Cola Buys 17% Stake in Monster Beverage for $2B
Coca-Cola Buys 17% Stake in Monster Beverage for $2B
Apple Gets Higher Price Target; Staples and Discovery Are Downgraded
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Shares of Monster Beverage surged following the market's close on Thursday after Coca-Cola said it will take a 16.7% stake for $2.15 billion in the energy drink maker. The two companies are calling it a long term strategic partnership that should help speed up growth in the fast-growing energy drink category. Monster will gain access to coke's worldwide bottling system. As part of the deal, there will be some brand transfers. Coke will transfer its NOS, Full Throttle and Burn brands, among others, to Monster. Monster will transfer its non-energy businesses, including Hansen's Natural Sodas, Peace Tea, Hubert's Lemonade and Hansen's Juice Products, to Coca-Cola. Coca-Cola's CEO Muhtar Kent said, 'This long-term partnership aligns us with a leading energy player globally, brings financial benefit to our Company and our bottling partners, and supports broader commercial strategies with our customers.' The deal should be completed by the end of 2014 or early 2015. TheStreet's Ruben Ramirez has details from New York.
In Wednesday's Analysts' Actions, Discovery Communications (DISCA) and Staples (SPLS) get rating downgrades, while Apple (AAPL) gets a couple of price target hikes following its seconds quarter earnings release. Discovery was downgraded to SELL from NEUTRAL at UBS. The firm also lowered its price target, and believes the company has less negotiating leverage in its upcoming renewal talks with Comcast Corp (CMCSA). Staples was also downgraded by analysts at TD Securities to UNDERWEIGHT from MARKETWEIGHT. The firm cited limited earnings growth. Apple had its price target increased by analysts at Cantor Fitzgerald and Brean Capital. Cantor raised its price target to $195 from $180 with a BUY rating, while Brean Capital raised its target to $170 from $160. TheStreet's Kurumi Fukushima reports in New York.
Stocks were trading close to the flatline on Tuesday. Nerves got the better of Wall Street as the Federal Reserve convened for a two-day meeting. The central bank isn't expected to diverge from current monetary policy, though its statement out Wednesday will be combed through for hints as to when an interest rate hike could occur. Apple (AAPL) was dominating business headlines after posting a 27% increase in quarterly sales. Ford (F) missed profit estimates in its quarter after shifting fewer models and as a stronger U.S. dollar cut into total sales. Merck (MRK) shook off the impact of a stronger dollar in its recent quarter, beating earnings and sales estimates.
Apple (AAPL) shares hit a record high after it reported blockbuster sales of the iPhone. The company sold 61 million in the recent quarter. Apple had earnings of $2.33 a share on revenue of $58 billion for the quarter. Apple also boosted its dividend for the third time in 4 years. The dividend increase was 11% to 52 cents a share. Oil major BP (BP) reported a fall in profit as the plunging price of oil continues to hit revenues for the entire sector. The company's earnings come at a time of uncertainty for the energy giant, which has been the subject of takeover speculation. Shares of The Container Store (TCS) fell as much s 24% after hours as it missed expectations.
The S&P 500 and Nasdaq closed at new all-time highs on Friday as an earnings-driven rally in shares of Amazon (AMZN), Google (GOOGL) and Microsoft (MSFT) pushed markets higher. Amazon was the best performer on the S&P 500. Wall Street was pleased after the tech giant reported a double-digit increase in quarterly revenue. Xerox (XRX) was the worst performer on the S&P 500, tripping more than 8% after cutting its profit outlook on a stronger dollar. Microsoft led the Dow, reporting strong growth in hardware and cloud computing and beating both earnings and sales estimates in its first quarter. Exxon Mobil (XOM) was among the worst performers on the Dow.
Tuesday, April 28th is another busy day on Wall Street. We outline notable earnings and the key economic data to keep an eye on. TheStreet's Jim Cramer says the one report he's watching on Tuesday is Twitter's (TWTR) first quarter financial results. Goldman Sachs analysts think Twitter will have a strong quarter. Other earnings include GoPro (GPRO), Merck & Co (MRK), Pfizer (PFE), Ford Motor Co (F), JetBlue (JBLU), and United Parcel Service (UPS). On the economic calendar, we look out for the home price index as well as consumer confidence data. TheStreet's Kurumi Fukushima reports in New York.
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